Can you put aluminium foil in an air fryer? The short answer is Yes.
You can use aluminium foil in an air fryer. However, there are few things to keep in mind when using it. In this article we will go over the best practices for using aluminium foil in your air fryer. Also we will go over what foods you should not cook with aluminium foil in your air fryer and if there is any better options than using aluminium foil.
- Can you put aluminium foil in the air fryer and why would you?
- The most important rule for using aluminium foil in the air fryer
- Other tips to use aluminium foil in an air fryer
- Avoid cooking acidic food in aluminium foil in an air fryer
- Use air fryer parchment paper instead
- Check out some recipes
Can you put aluminium foil in the air fryer and why would you?
A rule of thumb that usually what can be used in an oven can be used in an air fryer too.
One of the great things about air fryers is that you can use them to make so many different kinds of dishes. They can bake, roast, fry and grill a wide range of foods with their innovative heat circulating technology.
But because of this technology you have to be very careful when using aluminium foil in the air fryer. Since air fryers blow massive heat through their heating element, there are a few safety issues that you must keep in mind.
On the plus side wrapping food in aluminum foil is a great way to ensure that it retains its moisture while being cooked thoroughly. Aluminum foil is a good conductor of heat and helps to cook the food evenly in an air fryer. When you use foil, you can cook at a lower temperature for a longer period of time. When you are cooking meats in the air fryer (like venison) for example it is important to retain the juiciness of the meat as much as you can. In these instances it is a good idea to use an aluminium foil.
Now let’s talk about the safety issues.
The most important rule for using aluminium foil in the air fryer
Never ever put aluminium foil without putting any food in your air fryer! The air circulator will move the foil around in the air fryer and if it touches the heating element it can catch fire and potentially burn down your air fryer (and in a worst case scenario everything else)!
Other tips to use aluminium foil in an air fryer
Don’t cover the holes – Air fryers use a circulating heat system so it is very important that you don’t obstruct the flow of the heat in any way.
Fold the lining of the foil – Fold the lining of the aluminium foil 2 or 3 times so it creates a handle. This way you can easily put it in and take it out.
Put the foil in the basket only – Only put aluminium foil in the bottom of the basket. Don’t put it under the basket or on top of the food.
Don’t use microwave – If you have an air fryer microwave combo never use it on the microwave function as it is strictly prohibited to put anything metallic inside a microwave
And let’s stress it again – NEVER put aluminium foil without adding food to it because it can burn down your kitchen!
Avoid cooking acidic food in aluminium foil in an air fryer
The problem here is that acidic foods like tomatoes, fruits (especially citrus), peppers, and vinegar or vinegar marinades is that it will react with the aluminium. The acid can dissolve the aluminium and it can go into your food.
This is bad news for you for 2 reasons:
On one hand it is unhealthy. There are 10 metals the human body needs and aluminium is not one of them. Being exposed to high levels of aluminium can cause severe health problems.
On the other hand if you heat them together in an air fryer, then you’re going to be left with a strong metallic taste in your food.
Here’s a list of fruits and vegetables with their pH rating from the most acidic to the least (source: Healthline):
- lemon juice (pH: 2.00–2.60)
- limes (pH: 2.00–2.80)
- blue plums (pH: 2.80–3.40)
- grapes (pH: 2.90–3.82)
- pomegranates (pH: 2.93–3.20)
- grapefruits (pH: 3.00–3.75)
- blueberries (pH: 3.12–3.33)
- pineapples (pH: 3.20–4.00)
- apples (pH: 3.30–4.00)
- peaches (pH: 3.30–4.05)
- oranges (pH: 3.69–4.34)
- tomatoes (pH: 4.30–4.90)
So generally these are the ingredients you want to avoid using with an aluminium foil when cooking in an air fryer.
I suggest you read up on this more, but generally it’s better to avoid cooking acidic foods in aluminium foil. If you want to use aluminium foil for something like baked apples or other fruits, then use parchment paper instead. It might not be as shiny or pretty looking as aluminum foil but it does its job perfectly well without imparting any strange flavours into your food.
Use air fryer parchment paper instead
If you are looking for a safer alternative let me introduce you too parchment papers!
Firstly parchment papers have a non-reactive surface. That means that you can put any food on them. There is no risk of mixing your food with any harmful substances.
Secondly it is a more environmentally conscious solution. Many parchment papers are made from recycled materials nowadays.
Thirdly it is easier to use. Some retailers even made perforated parchment papers for better air flow in your air fryer.
Check out our article on the best parchment papers you can find.
But if you don’t have parchment paper on hand you can also use a bowl but not all types!
In conclusion, we’re all very busy these days, and the last thing you want to be doing is cleaning your air fryer for 10 minutes after a batch of brussel sprouts. Therefore using parchment papers while frying can be very handy.
We learned that you can also use aluminium foil for certain foods but there are a few rules you must apply. The most important of them is to never put the foil in the air fryer without the food because it can burn down the appliance.
Also there are certain foods that shouldn’t be cooked in an aluminium foil. These are the acidic fruits and vegetables. It can be unhealthy and your food will taste metallic.
When you need more moisture (e.g. for meats) using aluminium foil is a good choice but for everything else we recommend using parchment papers.
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